UK to deploy paratroopers to South Sudan for UN peacekeeping mission

British’s 16 air assault brigade in Afghanistan. Photo: Getty Images
British’s 16 air assault brigade in Afghanistan. Photo: Getty Images

Juba/London, October 31, 2016 (SSNA) — Britain’s Defence Secretary, Michael Fallon, says the United Kingdom is ready to send Airborne medics to South Sudan to serve on a United Nations peacekeeping mission.

The announcement comes as the international community is trying to come up with a solution which could bring an end to nearly three years of civil war in the world’s youngest nation.

The Medical Regiment, which is expected to be deployed early next year, will transport a fully-fitted parachutable field hospital to South Sudan which can be used for emergency surgeries, according government statement seen by the South Sudan News Agency.

“If countries like South Sudan descend into chaos and armed conflict then in the end we get affected,” Fallon said.  He added that his government is committed to confront any instability that could lead to what he described as ‘mass migration and terrorism’ and that the United Kingdom is “stepping up its global commitments – in the interests of humanity.”

The mission which was extended in August by the UN Security Council is strictly for civilian protection.

However, critics say the mission failed to perform its duties after some peacekeepers were reported to have abandoned their posts, leaving vulnerable civilians without protection.

Britain, a member of Troika—a three nation (Norway, US, and UK) bloc credited for orchestrating South Sudan’s 2011 independence, already has troops in the violence-ravaged nation operating under UN mandates.

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